With last call looming, a 28-year-old mom named Diana Salinas drove to Sanchez Restaurant and Bar in Oak Cliff early Sunday morning and made a bee line for her estranged husband, police say. She left her ill-advised companion in the car: her two-year-old son.
After an argument about child support, Salinas followed the man, Oscar Pacheco, out of the bar, kicking and scratching him, police say. He climbed in his truck and drove away.
As outlined in chapter three of What to Expect if You Take Your Baby to a Bar at Last Call, this would have been an opportune time for Salinas to collect her son, slug a water and catch a ride home. But as Pacheco would quickly discover, she hitched a ride somewhere else.
According to police, when Pacheco arrived at his home, not far from the bar, Salinas emerged from the bed of his pickup and broke the passenger-side mirror "by unknown mean." Pacheco went inside and Salinas fled. Her son, police say, was still back at the bar.
Somewhere along the way, Salinas had the sense to phone a friend, whom she asked to retrieve the boy. But by the time the friend showed up at her car, he was gone, police say.
The friend called 911. Police arrived and launched a search. Salinas was arrested and charged with assault and abandoning a child, a felony.
The cops eventually found the boy in a nearby apartment. Some neighbors had noticed him in the car and, when no when showed up to claim him, brought him in for the night. It was 8:30 in the morning by the time police swooped the boy up in a plaid shirt and diaper and turned him over to Child Protective Services, almost seven hours after they say his mother abandoned him in the name of child support.